While having the convenience of a swimming pool in your backyard is appealing, there are some things to consider before having one installed in your backyard. Consider these 7 items before making the plunge.
1. Swimming pool maintenance responsibilities
Maintaining a swimming pool can become costly, especially at the beginning and end of the swimming season when opening and closing the pool. The chemicals required to keep the water clean are costly, but additional testing and water treatment can be expensive. Vinyl liners last only 5 to 7 years and cost several thousand dollars to replace.
2. Swimming pools need to be repaired often
Whether above or in ground, pools require frequent repairs. Pool liners tear easily, water filter pumps become clogged and burn out, and equipment is easily damaged by the weather. A small issue can rapidly become a costly repair if not caught and addressed early.
3. Swimming pools require special safety measures
Pools can be dangerous, especially to small children and pets. This danger is increased for children 4 and under, and pets of the pool owner who have the easiest access. Most localities require extra safety measures to be taken for pool owners, whether that means a gated entry to the pool area or a fence around the yard. Some localities require that pools have a secure cover in place when not in use. Some also require pool owners to carry additional insurance that explicitly covers the pool.
4. Not every area is a good fit
Although there is space for a swimming pool in a yard, the ground conditions may not be suitable. For an above ground pool, the ground will need to be leveled and the soil tested to ensure it will hold up to the weight and moisture. For an in ground pool, soil composition is important so it will not break down around the concrete over time.
5. Swimming pools are a long term commitment
A good quality above ground pool that is well maintained will last around 15 years. An in ground pool will last more than 20 years if maintained. The novelty of having a swimming pool may wear off a few years of constant maintenance.
6. Water attracts wildlife
Animals and insects are attracted to a pool as a source of water. Raccoons, possums, cats, dogs, squirrels, even bats and birds, will be frequent visitors and can cause damage to the pool. Water loving insects, especially mosquitos and some types of spiders, will be much more common around a swimming pool.
7. Pools raise utility costs
Few new pool owners realize that swimming pools come with a hidden cost: utility bills. While it is to be expected that water bills will increase due to maintaining the water level of a swimming pool, what few realize is that the electric bill will also rise noticeably. This is due to the water filter that must be running constantly when the pool is filled to keep the water clean.